December 14th, 2000
By JEFF KING
West Virginia University continues to be on schedule with an array of building constructions and renovations.
The highly anticipated addition to Wise Library remains on schedule and is expected to be completed by December 2001. The $36 million project will add more than 90,000 square feet.
“There was a need for additional library space, particularly study space,” Vice President of Administration and Finance Scott Kelley said.
CONTACTS: John Cuthbert, Curator, 304-293-3536 ext. 313
Patrick Conner, Director, University Press, 304-293-3107 ext. 431
There will be a reception celebrating the launch of this new book at 5 p.m. Nov. 14 in WVU’s Elizabeth Moore Hall. We invite your coverage.
“Everything that has happened in American art through the years has also happened in West Virginia,” says Director of the West Virginia University Press and Centennial Professor of English Patrick Conner. “That’s why a new book, Early Art and Artists in West Virginia, a study of the state’s artistic heritage from its beginnings in the 19th century to the mid-20th century is important in helping West Virginia break down the myths about its culture and image.”
Quoting from the book’s foreword by U.S. Sen. John D. Rockefeller IV, a collector of West Virginia art, Dr. Conner notes that “Sophistication and elegance have long coexisted with the state’s celebrated mountain folk culture.”
To support the move of the Division of Social Work from the Evansdale Campus to the Downtown Campus, the Libraries have moved materials relating to social work from the Evansdale Library to the Wise Library. Over 5,600 books and journal volumes were moved. Please check Mountainlynx for accurate location information.
WVU campus drawings by an architect who designed or remodeled many campus buildings are now available in the West Virginia and Regional History Collection (WVRHC) through a donation by the family last year.
Beginning in the late 1950s and up into the 1980s, Robert J. Bennett was involved in much work at WVU. His designs included the Chemistry Building Annex (’66), Knapp Hall (’65), the Evansdale Library (’78), and others including several renovations.
His estate donated the drawings, more than a score, through Bennett’s wife, Jacqueline R. Bennett, and daughter Sandy Bennett Taylor. Bennett died in 1996.
The drawings have been processed by the WVRHC and became available the first of October.
“We are really pleased to have this documentation of many of our buildings and their renovations available as a resource for those who seek additional knowledge about our campus,” said John Cuthbert, curator. “And we certainly appreciate the generosity of the Bennett family in making this important donation to enhance our archival materials.”
CONTACT: Frances O’Brien, dean, (304) 293-4040 ext. 4000
The West Virginia University Book Depository will be officially dedicated at a ceremony at 10:30 a.m. Thursday, Oct. 5. The public is invited.
The $2.8 million building was completed last spring and began storing books this summer. Very old books and ones that have not been used in 10 years will be kept there on rows of 30-foot-high shelves in the environmentally controlled building.
By next summer, nearly more than 125,000 books will be moved to the new building, which is located off of Route 705 at the old WVU poultry farm.
Speakers will be President David C. Hardesty, Provost Gerald Lang, Library Dean Frances O’Brien and Carroll Wilkinson, head of Circulation Services.
“We hope everyone will visit this new facility and learn how books are stored and retrieved for use,” said Frances O’Brien, library dean. Libraries across the country are building depositories because of the abundance of materials and overcrowding, she said.
A look inside the West Virginia and Regional History Collection at WVU.
West Virginia University Alumni Magazine v.23:no.3 (Fall 2000)
by John Cuthbert
The author is curator of the West Virginia and Regional History Collection of the WVU Libraries.
It has often been said that history holds the keys to unlocking the future. If there is even a kernel of truth to this statement, then surely the West Virginia and Regional History Collection of the WVU Libraries is an asset that will prove to be invaluable to the citizens of West Virginia as we struggle to meet the new challenges of the next millennium. As the primary keeper of the historical record of the Mountain State, the West Virginia Collection has a formidable number of keys at its disposal.
By Joshua Jefferson
WVU Alumni Association
During this year of growth and renovation on the campus of WVU, the WVU Alumni Association has made a $250,000 pledge to support the University Libraries. The pledge will support the Alumni Association’s commitment to the new $35 million Downtown Library Complex, scheduled for completion in September 2002.
By Tim Terman
It was a muddy hole in the ground for months. Men with ponderous machines ripped loose tons and tons of earth, down to bedrock, and when it rained, a brown stream flowed into University Avenue.
The War Public Library was destroyed by fire March 20. Three teenage boys have been charged with arson. The fire destroyed the building, and nearly all of the 40,000 item collection. The Library’s Gates computers were destroyed also. The WVU Libraries are donating 6 boxes of books and 3 computers to the War Public Library.
John Cuthbert is delivering our gifts to the West Virginia Library Commission in Charleston, and from there the items will be sent to War. Donna Capelle Cook and Eleanor McDonald from the Cataloging Department, and Dennis Newborn from the Library Systems Office prepared the books and computers. Our library staff also have volunteered their time to assist in getting the War Public Library services restored.
More workstations on both campuses may be on the way
By SAM WILKINSON
Computers at West Virginia University are a fact of life. Almost everyone must use them, be it to type papers or get assignments online.
To aid disabled students at WVU, Carol Kann, a Technology Education doctoral candidate, coordinated an effort at the university to offer hardware, software, training and ongoing support to students in need.
“We have the technology at WVU for disabled students,” Kann said. “We just need to get the word out about the fact that these machines are here.”
By SAM WILKINSON
Appointed by West Virginia University Provost Gerald Lang to be the new dean of West Virginia libraries, Frances O’Brien comes to WVU in a time of change.
New facilities are being built and the budget is being increased. O’Brien is thrilled.
“I was impressed by a number of things,” O’Brien said. “The new building program, with the renovation of Evansdale, the all-site storage facility, the addition to expand the Wise Library, is a promise by the campus to support the library.”
O’Brien said she likes what WVU President David Hardesty and Lang say about being a student-centered University.
“I think it is a good setting for the students,” O’Brien said. “I hope it will be a responsive library with rapid access to information.”
by Jennelle L. Harper
Although some students are not aware of it, Colson Hall has made a leap into the 21st century by creating an electronic reserve system where students can access documents via the Internet, eliminating the hassle of making a trip to the library.
To access the system, students can go to the West Virginia University Libraries homepage (www.libraries.wvu.edu) and click on the link to the e-reserve.
However, not just anyone can access a professor’s reserved readings. The professor must first ask Colson to put his or her articles on electronic reserve and the professor must give their students the password to access the readings.
By SAM WILKINSON
After being lead by interim dean Myra Lowe, West Virginia Libraries have a new permanent dean, Frances O’Brien.
Effective June 16, O’Brien will take over for Lowe, who has served in an interim role since last July. Lowe took over for Dr. Ruth Jackson, who stepped down in July of 1998.
O’Brien, who currently serves as the deputy university librarian at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, has also served as director of administrative services at the Virginia Polytechnic Institute, as well as working at the University of Tennessee Library, the University of Georgia, the University of Delaware and Virginia Tech
She is a member of the American Library Association, and has authored articles on library personnel issues.
O’Brien will be responsible to oversee the $30 million dollar expansion of WVU Libraries facilities, including $21 million to be spent on a new addition that will house paper volumes and information technology. It will also house computer centers. It will be built in front of Wise Library and will be completed in 2001.
The main entrance to Wise Library on WVU™s downtown campus closed permanently beginning at 7 a.m. Monday so workers can begin dismantling a steam tunnel beneath the sidewalk, a project official said. Library staff and patrons must now enter the building through a side entrance facing the Chemistry Research Building, said Ruth Nellis, coordinator of WVU’s library construction projects. The book drop-off at the main entrance will be moved to an area beneath the Research Building overhang, opposite the new library entrance. The sidewalk in front of Wise Library will remain open for two-three more weeks. “We wanted to have the entry changed prior to students getting back tocampus,” Nellis said. “We wanted to have the site logistics the same throughout the spring semester rather than make changes in the middle of the semester. “The steam tunnel demolition is required before workers can begin constructing a 124,000-square-foot addition to the library. The addition is part of a $33 million construction project that also includes renovations to the existing facility and consolidation of library facilities in Colson Hall and the Chemistry Research Building.